Trucker Fled After Striking Frenchtown-Uhlerstown Bridge: Police

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Pennsylvania State Police say an Arizona man was cited for an accident he allegedly caused while attempting to driver a tractor-trailer across the Frenchtown-Uhlerstown Bridge in Tinicum Township late last month.

In a news release issued Sunday, troopers from the Dublin barracks said 61-year-old Martin Arias-Rodriguez, of Glendale, Ariz., was driving a 2021 Peterbilt Dane on the morning of July 31 when he began to turn right onto the bridge from River Road.

“As (Arias-Rodriguez) was turning right onto the Frenchtown-Uhlerstown Bridge, (his) trailing unit struck the bridge rail while turning,” the news release said.

“(Arias-Rodriguez) then backed up and fled the scene of the crash,” police added.

Bridge surveillance footage recorded the 10:25 a.m. accident, the news release indicated.

Frenchtown Bridge

Credit: Google Street View

Signs at the Uhlerstown (Pennsylvania) end of the bridge identify the span’s 15-ton weight limit and other characteristics that may limit crossings. The Frenchtown-Uhlerstown Bridge is 90 years old and connects the two communities on opposite sides of the Delaware River.

According to the news release, the violation for which Arias-Rodriguez was being cited was Accidents Involving Damage to Unattended Property. A criminal court docket filed in the case in Bucks County District Court 07-3-03 lists the summary charge against him as Obedience to Traffic Control Devices.

The docket did not list any court appearances or dates for Arias-Rodriguez, or an attorney for him.

The Frenchtown-Uhlerstown Bridge spans the Delaware River between Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Operated by the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission since 1929, the current span is 90 years old; with a roadway width of 16 feet, six inches; a load limit of 15 tons, a maximum clearance of 12 feet, six inches; and a speed limit of 15 mph.

State police at Dublin recently investigated an unrelated accident involving trucks which were attempting to cross a narrow canal bridge on River Road in Upper Bucks County.

Note: All individuals charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. This story was compiled using information from Pennsylvania State Police and Bucks County court records.

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